Republicans open convention divided on immigration
Send a link to a friend
[June 06, 2014]
By Marice Richter
FORT WORTH Texas (Reuters) - Texas
Republicans opened their convention on Thursday poised for a bruising
battle on whether to push for immigration reform in a state where
Hispanics could make up the majority of the population by 2030, or adopt
a hardline approach on the contentious issue.
The conservative Tea Party branch of the party, which is led by
U.S. Senator Ted Cruz and carries great weight in the state, wants
to shoot down a 2012 party policy known as the “Texas Solution" that
would allow undocumented workers to hold jobs that go unfilled.
"This amounts to nothing more than amnesty that never ends,” said
Dallas-Fort Worth-area delegate Brenda White as she passed out
stickers calling for “No Texas Solution.”
Supporters of the Texas Solution say common sense has to prevail or
the party will find itself increasingly out of touch as its base of
white voters shrinks to a minority group in 15 years if demographic
“We have to reach out to Hispanics and young people,” said George P.
Bush, the Republican nominee for Texas land commissioner, told
delegates. He is the nephew of former President George W. Bush and
grandson of former President George H.W. Bush.
“These are two groups that I know something about because I am part
of them,” said Bush, 38, whose mother, Columba Bush, is Mexican-born
and whose father is former Florida Governor Jeb Bush.
Republicans dominate politics in Texas, a state with a $1.4 trillion
yearly economy. Republicans are the favorites in elections later
this year for the posts of governor, lieutenant governor and
Democrats have not won a statewide race since 1994 but are hoping
they can make gains as the demographic numbers shift in their favor
and the Republican Party maintains strongly conservative positions.
[to top of second column]
Cruz has emerged as one of the leaders of the Texas Republicans,
pushing politics in the already conservative state even further to
the right, analysts said.
The party platform will come up for a vote on Saturday.
The 2012 party document also called for the United States to drop
out of the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund and World
Bank, and said: "Homosexuality tears at the fabric of society."
(Writing by Jon Herskovitz; Editing by Peter Cooney)
[© 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights
Copyright 2014 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published,
broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.